How Dagestans treat Chechens

Origins of the conflict of Chechens and Dagestans

 In 1944 several hundred thousand were deported from the villages of the border region of Dagestan to Central Asia and Kazakhstan Chechens (along with Ingush) during Operation Lentil. The reason was the accusation of Chechens and Ingush for mass evasion of opposition to fascist Germany. Lavrenty Pavlovich Beria led this operation by the People’s Commissar of Internal Affairs of the USSR.

As a result of deportation, Dagestans were forcibly relocated to a new border residence formerly belonging to Chechens. After the collapse of the USSR, the deported Chechens wanted to return to their homeland, but their housing was already occupied by Dagestans, who did not decide to cede their territory to the Chechens, as they had already formed their own everyday life. There was a conflict between the peoples, which was an echo of further disputed situations between the two peoples.

Thus, in June 2019, Dagestans demolished a road sign of the Chechen Republic at the exit from Kizlyar, where the border between the republics is passed. This event caused resentment of both peoples and received publicity at the political level. Locals marked the situation as a continuation of territorial partition. Ramzan Kadyrov officially announced that Dagestan did not claim foreign territory, and also that the sign was installed in the right place — from the Chechen Republic side.


nearly three dozen years, Chechens have been raising the question of rebuilding the Aukhov district of Dagestan, from which their ancestors were deported. Upon their return from exile, the deported Chechens were settled in other areas of Dagestan, it was not possible to return to the “native land” where their relatives were buried. Now Chechens actively raise the issue of establishment of historical justice and re-establishment of Aukhovsky district in former borders. This circumstance causes the resentment of Dagestans. Ideas about the relocation of a part of citizens of Dagestan to other territories cause them understandable discontent.

The brothers in faith

Dagestans, when communicating with the Chechens, can hardly understand each other, as their languages vary widely. Only a few words of these languages are in tune with each other. Nevertheless, Dagestani and Chechens share the same faith, Sunni Islam, which suggests their inextricable relationship not only with regard to mentality but also with regard to the worldview. Many Dagestans consider the Chechens to be their brothers, arguing that the spiritual connection, based on religion, is stronger than national interests. Dagestans ask Chechens not to give in to possible provocations and not to put politics above the common faith that unites them.

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